For the Next Door Kids

Posted in Feature on November 11, 2005

By John H. Klauk

The Junior Super Series Challenges 2006 Season will soon begin. What is it all about, you ask? Many things, but one in particular that comes to mind.

15 years old and younger! That is what this challenge is all about. Now, even if you are past this prime in your Magic: The Gathering® tournament career, pay attention and read on. After all, chances are you know someone who this magical age does apply to, and you should pass the word along to them.

In case you don’t know, the JSS (Junior Super Series) is a series of local tournaments that allow younger Magic: The Gathering players (15 years old and younger… remember the “magical age” from above?) to win some money for college, score some free Magic cards, and above all else have a great time and meet new friends. They can even win an invitation to the Junior Super Series Championship. Last year’s JSS Championship had over $100,000 up for grabs in college scholarships. If any younger player reading this needs some justification handy to present to their parents in order to let them participate in these qualifying JSS Challenge events, just show them that comment. Heck, I’ll even list it again for you.

The JSS Challenges can open up an avenue for a younger Magic player to compete in the Junior Super Series Championship where they can have a chance to compete for over $100,000 in college scholarships.

Justification for higher level Magic, pure and simple.

This year, there will be two separate seasons for the JSS Challenges to compete in. There will be a Winter and a Spring Season. The Winter Season will begin January 8th and run until March 27th. The Spring Season will run from April 1st through July 3rd. Players can compete in both seasons, even if they have already competed in one and won scholarship prizes. That means you have two chances to grab some prizes. That’s right! Even if you have already played in the Winter Season and took home the gold, you can come back during the Spring Season and do it all over again. Double up your prizes and double up your fun. What’s not to like?

All the events during the JSS Challenges will be Standard Constructed events. If you need to hone up on some strategies for this format, then I suggest staying in touch with the current Standard Constructed metagame by reading articles from magicthegathering.com, specifically making sure to catch articles on Thursdays (Swimming with Sharks by Mike Flores) and Fridays (The Week That Was by Brian David-Marshall). While you’re at it, it wouldn’t hurt to tighten up your play by checking out Wednesday’s The Play's The Thing by Zvi Mowshowitz. All of these articles will be a valuable tool to any player planning on competing in a JSS Challenge.

Contact your local tournament organizer for location and registration information regarding any particular JSS Challenge event. Wizards of the Coast will post a schedule of events once the season is about to begin that will be located here for quick reference. The entry fee to each tournament will be $15. Not a bad price for a day’s worth of fun and entertainment. Especially if you walk away with the prize.

Speaking of prizes, this is what Wizards of the Coast is giving away at each event:

First, everyone who competes in a JSS Challenge event receives a premium card. During the Winter Season, this shiny little gem will be Sakura-Tribe Elder. Sure to be a HOT card to have, as this little turtle-headed Rampant Growth has fast become a staple card in the current Standard Constructed tournament scene. Once everything thaws out and the Spring Season rolls around, the premium card will change to an alternate art Shard Phoenix!

Um, where can I get one of these? Yeah, it’s that cool!

And that’s just what everyone gets simply for playing in the event! The “Top Youngster” (that’s the top finishing 12-year-old or younger player who does not get into the elimination rounds of the tournament after the Swiss portion) snags a JSS backpack. The head judge will also toss out another backpack to the player he determines to have been the “Most Sporting Player.”

Ah… I like that. Teaching them sportsmanship at a young age. Good deal.

Nine booster packs of the most current Magic expansion will be given out to the 5th through 8th place competitors. Not too shabby considering you only paid $15 to play. That puts you ahead right there.

Eighteen booster packs of the most current Magic expansion will be handed out to the 3rd and 4th place finishers. Sweet! That’s half a box! Thanks for playing.

If you take 2nd place, then you earn a $500 college scholarship, an invitation to the JSS Championship, an entire booster box of the current Magic expansion, and a JSS backpack to put it all in. That will put a smile on anyone’s face

Now… drum roll please...

If you win you get a lot, and I mean a lot of cool stuff. You get a $500 college scholarship. You get an invitation to the JSS Championship. You get a JSS backpack. And you get Magic: The Gathering cards for a year! That means you get one booster box of the current Magic expansion and one booster box of the next two Magic: The Gathering Expert Level Exapansions. See… I told you it was a lot.

Now for some technical stuff. Any player who has any Pro points or is age 16 or older may not compete in any Junior Super Series event. That means I and a lot of other folks are out of luck. But, like I said before, if you are one of those folks, chances are that you know someone who can compete. Pass along this information to them. This could be the start of something very exciting and fun for them. Many current and past Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour players got their start from playing in JSS events. One particular competitor comes to mind. His name is Jon Finkel. You may have heard of him.

Hmm… they should make JSS player cards. Heck, they should make MPR author cards. Mine would be humorous to read, that’s for certain.

  • John KlaukWork Wizard
    Lifetime Earnings: $0. Zip. Nadda. Nothing. He’s seen the check. Does that count?
    GP Top 8: Watched several.
    PT Top 8: Again, watched many.
    State Top 8: Aha… now we’re talking. 4.
    PTQ Top 8: His old mind can’t remember… let’s say 13 (has yet to win one though).
    GPT Top 8: 1. He actually won that one folks, and yet didn’t go to the Grand Prix?

Known by many, feared by none, John Klaukwork Wizard” continually evolves Magic by discovering new ways to lose the game.

Hey, if you can’t laugh at yourself…

Catch ya’ll later,
John H. Klauk
Klaukwork Wizard on Magic: The Gathering Online
johnklauk@wotcdelegates.org

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